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SUV catches fire after accident in UP's Bareilly, eight charred to death

Bareilly: Eight people, including a child, were charred to death in their SUV after it was hit by an oncoming truck and caught fire in this Uttar Pradesh district, police said on Sunday.

The driver of the SUV lost control of the vehicle after it suffered a tyre puncture. It jumped the barrier onto the other side of the road and was hit by the truck coming from the opposite direction, they said.

The accident occurred late on Saturday near the Dubhaura village in Bhojipura area on the Bareilly-Nainital Road, they added.

By the time the police reached the spot, the SUV was engulfed by the flames, the police said.

Superintendent of Police Sushil Chandrabhan confirmed the deaths of the eight people, including the child.

According to police, the SUV belonged to grocery shop owner Sumit Gupta, who had given it to Furkan. A customer, Narayan Nagla village resident Asif had asked Gupta for his SUV on Saturday morning, saying that his nephew Furkan wants to take it to attend a wedding in Bareilly.

On Saturday night, Furkan and some others had gone to Bareilly's Faham Lawn to attend the wedding, they said.

The SUV went out of control just a kilometre ahead of Bhojipura police station. According to eyewitnesses, the speed was so high that part of the divider of the four lanes broke and the vehicle reached the other side and hit a truck coming from the Nainital side, they said.

When the car caught fire, those sitting inside were stuck as the doors of the car did not open, probably due to malfunctioning of the central locking system.

The victims have been identified as Furkan (40), Mohammed Ayyub (36), Babu Mansoori (8), Mohammad Aalim (22), Mohammad Ashiq Shameem (34), Mohammad Asif (22), Mohammad Arif (24), Mohammad Shadab (19), all residents of Baheri area, police said.

Some passers-by moved forward to break the glass but due to the high flames, no one could reach near the car. Meanwhile, the truck had also caught fire. Some people brought fire extinguishers from the neighbouring petrol pump and tried to extinguish the fire.

Bareilly's CFO (Chief Fire Officer) Chandra Mohan Sharma said it is difficult to tell the reason for the accident right now.

It may have been the tyre burst, or the driver may have lost control due to sleep or being drunk, he said.

The reason will become clear after the investigation by the forensic team, he said.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has condoled the deaths.

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